Happy Valentines everyone. Love shouldn’t just be about a partner, love your friends and family too. I send love messages to my friends every year, because I love them too. My school friends are my family I chose. Without them my life would not be the same; they’ve witnessed too much; well before phones and social media were invented, so they need to remain close! But I truly do love them with all my heart and they have been in my life for a very long time, I feel very lucky..... all say ahh. Also, learn to love yourself, it's important you look after yourself and learn to like it too.
There’s lots of things coming up after the half term. Finally, our upgraded website will be going Live, our first Podcasts will start recording, The Repair Café First Fixers meeting, Garforth Community Feastival organising of the street music meeting, my trip to the Recycling Centre at Beeston, parents evening and, most importantly, Pancake day!
This week we welcome;
David Riley of DJR Heating and Plumbing and Abby Bowden Hairstylist, both local, and here in Garforth
Telephone: 07368 167 425 or 0113 287 6049
Local, reliable gas engineer with over 18 years’ experience. British Gas trained. Expert service, installation and repairs to all boilers and systems.
Telephone: 07753 335 736
New Hold Industrial Estate
(opposite the Aagrah)
Passionate hairstylist, qualified for 11 years in Colour, Cutting and Styling. Backstage experience at London, Milan and Paris Fashion week. Providing a calm, relaxing and luxurious experience welcoming new and old clients.
Think before you type
The great thing about social media is getting the word out there, good and bad. I tend not to follow the pages that just moan, give opinions or the ones they continually complain about a problem rather than shouting about a positive solution. But this week, there was one comment that came to my attention. People in one of our neighbouring villages decided to raise a post about new houses being built, which led to a thread of opinions and some abusive comments. One comment followed on from a resident who had just moved in to this new development, she said. ‘We have just moved into this neighbourhood and we’re not feeling very welcome, remember, your house was new once’. What a great response, love it! Think before you type, you don’t know what you’re doing when you’re not happy!
Coming up over the half term, there are lots of lovely activities for the kids a Few Gifts
You can find them on our App or on Few Gifts
events page https://www.facebook.com/pg/FEWGiftsGarforth/events/?ref=page_internal
Check out all our events as there are many other things going on locally too over the half term.
I see a new playground is being built at Glebelands, great to see, it was certainly a park that needed updating.
An application has been put in for the Petrol Station on Selby Road to extend and have a bit of a shop facelift, perhaps being able to offer more inside will be a good thing. I hope Sue stays, love Sue, she's so nice.
Tesco Express near the Crusader is due to open on the 17th February – I hope it brings back it’s ATM we seem to be down a lot on those at the minute!
We were asked this week if we could add a section about the growth of Small to Medium Enterprises (SME's) - a really interesting read to see how we they are definitely growing in the right direction across the country
Geoff Aldis a Consultant /Researcher, of Digital Content & Media, writes
Growth spurt: 1.6 million small businesses double their revenue in a month 27 Feb 2019 •
1.6 million small businesses say they double their revenue in some months • 53 per cent of Small to Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) reported an increase in revenue in past year • There has been a 23 per cent growth of VAT registered SMEs in the last five years • London is the UK’s small business birth capital, with almost a quarter of all new small firms formed in 2017 registered in the city New research published by Direct Line for Business1 reveals that for 1.6 million of the UK’s small businesses it is normal for their revenue to double or halve in certain months of the year. These large fluctuations in revenue make business and cash flow management difficult. Businesses and the services they use need to be flexible and willing to continually adapt, as more than a quarter (26 per cent, or 1.5 million) state their revenue fluctuates wildly month to month.
Controlling employee numbers is one way to manage these fluctuations as businesses scale staff up and down to cope with changes in demand and income at different points of the year. Twenty-three per cent of small businesses have had to employ more staff because of rapid expansion. However, these uncertainties don’t seem to be putting entrepreneurs off as the UK SME industry continues to grow. In the past year, 53 per cent of SMEs reported an increase in revenue, with one in 20 of these (three per cent) experiencing revenue growth of more than 50 per cent. There has been a 23 per cent growth of VAT registered SMEs in the last five years, with 2.7 million now operating within the UK2 . This has been driven by the 25 per cent increase in the number of microbusinesses (those that employ fewer than 10 employees), which now stand at 2.4 million. In 2017, there were 381,885 business ‘births’ in the UK3 , an increase of 10 per cent on the figure recorded in 2013. This was largely driven by the number of new businesses registered in Northern Ireland (41per cent increase) and the North West (35 per cent increase). London continued to see the highest number of new business start-ups, with 92,300 SMEs registering in the capital in 2017, accounting for almost a quarter (24 per cent) of all those formed in the UK.
“Jazz Gakhal, Managing Director at Direct Line for Business, said: “Small company owners and operators are amongst the most resilient and adaptable business leaders in the UK. Fluctuating revenues and demand can be difficult to manage, but British SMEs continue to thrive.
We will be back after the half term; next blog will be Friday 28th February
Until next week, spread the love
Just by chance, I am. Wear Red Day, it makes you feel brighter on this cold foggy day
I think I need a holiday, only one more week of school and then off; well, 'out of the office', luckily, I can easily carry the office with me wherever I go, being anywhere in the world and still being able to show you what’s going on locally, is pretty cool, thanks to our world of technology.
I had a thoroughly good, local night out last Saturday and, you will know, my first sip of something alcoholic since the 31st December; looking glamorous going out, not so pretty Sunday morning! We never learn…
Besides running around this week like a headless chicken and thus far, counting just short of 70,000 steps since Monday afternoon, it’s been another productive week. It was great to meet up with Dan Robinson who has formed Garforth’s Incredible Edibles and with Phil Barrett from Team Feastival, to discuss ideas, ways forward and funding, seeing if we can help him. Dan has some amazing ideas and wants to connect with what’s already here, Garforth in Bloom, Garforth Allotments; which are already helping his plans. Greening Garforth and Garforth Arts Network etc. He doesn’t want to invent the wheel, he wants to collaborate and bring people together, to do and learn together, make our community better with each step. If we can help get the word out there and Phil, help in getting him some funding and to get collaborative ideas and things to happen, then fabulous. Follow the groups and be part of the great changes. Could you take ownership of a bit of land and a raised bed, feed it with edible goodness and look after it?
This week, I have received an invitation from Leeds Recycles, to go on a tour of the recycling facility in Beeston, the aim is to raise awareness of the recycling sorting process and issues with contamination, They say we have really helped them get the word out locally to you guys by sharing all they do, and feel our influence in keeping you updated will only help even more – I’m quite excited, and will share all after the tour.
It’s nice to know that local people think of you when trying to help someone else. I have had my second request for input and information from a Leeds Uni. student, the second onne in the past 6 months. They are studying the trends and downfalls of modern-day shopping such as towns and high streets, and wanted my input. He asked why I thought high streets were failing; I turned him round to thinking, why are we bucking the trend!
Why is our town so busy with people and traffic?
Why do we have no empty shops?
Why do we have a list of people wanting to get onto the high street?
Why are people coming back to the high street?
If you listen to a journalist talking on the news, they always comment on the high street as in a city centre, high streets with big chains such as big department stores, but not very often speak of the high street as in, small towns. Not many articles are spoken about how, some towns are turning around and having a rise in footfall and more independents coming in; there is a lot of reason for these changes in our town
Creating a buzz and showing people what’s local
Housing Development, new people to the area
Location and changes to increasing public transport (when the trains turn up)
Growing together and making the good changes we want to see
It will be nice to be mentioned in the students article when he's finished his work
If you’re not using our new App, you’re missing out the next 64 local events and finding businesses easily!
I see planning has been approved for, The Assembly, which will go ahead at the premises of Neil’s Fruit and Veg shop (Ladycares) Another great place to be, locally ! Word on the street, they would like to be open by April. Good luck to them whilst all the work gets underway.
Jigger and Jar have also put in an application to extend their opening hours, a little! Cool
I shared a few details this week of 2 businesses that are up for sale.
The Good Food Store on Main Street and Heer’s Convenience store on Fairburn Drive
I like to drop ideas, plant seeds and see what you, the community think to those ideas. I suggested a Vegan takeout shop for The Good Food Store, somewhere you can buy great homemade vegan and veggie food, possibly gluten free etc, A few things were pointed out, such as, oly 1% of our population is vegan, true, but why not be part of the growth, choice and options in our high street! A few people would like to see another fast food option such as McDonalds or KFC….. not for me thanks and not a good idea to encourage more unhealthy options to our nearby schools. Local councils are trying to discourage too, in a new policy where they look at the fast food options on high streets, and make sure we don't have too many, thankfully!
Heers convenience store – I suggested this would be great as a Local Deli, selling meats, cheese, breads, fresh local produce, fruit and veg, coffee etc, stock as much of it from our local producers, so having a great local convenience store with great options!
These are my suggestions. 2 new independent businesses we don’t already have, something new, something good, something that I feel will work. What are your thoughts?
Until next week – Enjoy local, we’re getting better because you’re being part of the buzz and using local, first
My name is Christine Thom, I came to live in Garforth nearly 22 years ago; you may have seen me around ?